Frequently Asked Questions in San Mateo AYSO
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The AYSO mission is to develop and deliver quality youth soccer programs which promote a fun, family environment based on our philosophies:
The San Mateo ASYO is the largest youth sports program in San Mateo. Information regarding the AYSO program can be found at www.soccer.org.
PIE stands for Positive, Instructional, and Encouraging. It is a philosophy that we want all to abide by when dealing with players. This means no negative comments towards a player when they make a mistake or fail to perform to your standards. Referees do have the authority to eject parents, coaches, or spectators who verbally abuse a player. So please keep all comments PIE.
AYSO is a national soccer league that promotes a positive, instructional and encouraging soccer experience for players at every skill level. CYSA, not affiliated with AYSO, is a completely separate soccer league with teams throughout Northern California (including several in San Mateo). CYSA provides a soccer experience with teams in a highly competitive league environment.
Information on player registration locations is found on this website (see Registration). Families are encouraged to pre-register and print their own registration forms through the national eAYSO website. These forms must be brought to one of the Open Registrations listed on the website. Open Registration can only be done in person.
Volunteers (coaches, referees, etc.) have an online early registration option and can register their children at a discounted rate. Please check the website if you are interested in volunteering.
Late registration is only done through the mail. Late registration is first-come, first-served. The use of the Open Registration process is encouraged.
The registration covers all player expenses, including the basic picture package, and supplemental accident insurance for AYSO-sponsored activities.
Players need shin-guards, appropriate shoes, and (strongly recommended) a practice ball.
Additional expenses may include:
San Mateo AYSO endeavors to provide a quality soccer experience for all eligible players. Families who are unable to afford the registration expenses may contact the Regional Commissioner during the open registration times.
Requests for brothers or sisters in the same division to be on the same team are honored whenever possible. Often, however, a parent may decide that it is not a good idea for their children to play together, which will also be honored whenever possible. These requests must be noted on each player's registration form.
Requests to play on the same team as another player for younger players are honored whenever possible. You must coordinate with the other player's parents as each registration form must list the other player's name in the registration form comment section. Player age and team balancing are factors in pairing players.
Coach requests are not encouraged or honored. Coaches and Assistant Coaches have their children on their teams.
Practices can be any day of the week but are typically Monday through Friday, and are at the convenience of the coach. There is no way to assign players to coaches based on practice day preferences.
If the problem is transportation, just speak to the coach or team parents. There is always someone who will be available and willing to give your child a ride. If there are other activities (such as lessons of some kind), maybe it would be possible to adjust the schedule. Please try to make it to practice. Your child is involved in a team sport. The team cannot learn to work together if there are players who consistently miss practices.
Attach a note to your registration form describing your needs and circumstances. The regional coordinators, when developing the teams, may be able to accommodate your request. Please note that the coordinator considers many factors in the development of a team, and may not be able to honor your request. (If the player is in the Under 12 or Under 14 division, balancing of the teams is important and special requests are difficult to honor.)
Since you got your Player Registration Form mailed in as directed, then you are on the wait list the appropriate division. Late registrants for divisions which have not reached their capacity are placed on teams soon after receipt of the form. If you did not promptly hear back, the division is probably full and are on the wait list.
Every attempt is made to allow all players to play. The total number of players in each division is determined based on the number of trained coaches available and the number of players registering during the open registration period.
Parents tend not to un-register their kids when they move from the area or decide not to play, so the region generally does not know who is not going to play until the initial telephone calls are made. If your wait-listed child can be placed on a team, you are most likely to receive a call starting in the second week of August.
I hope this helps. You may call Email the Waitlist and Late Registration Coordinator and leave a message, but they likely will have little additional information until mid- to late- August.
Every region in AYSO conducts their own registration for the upcoming season. Transfers are not possible, however refunds are. See the Regional Guidelines or here for information on refunds.
If you have moved to another city and have already registered, you may still participate in the San Mateo program if you desire. Informing the new region that you have already registered in San Mateo and that you have just moved may help avoid additional expenses often charged in the region's Late Registration process.
If you have previously registered in another region, please contact the Regional Commissioner. Your family's eAYSO registration database record may need to be modified to allow registration in a new region.
Yes! The VIP program is designed to meet the needs of physically and mentally challenged children. <more info>
San Mateo AYSO does not have any co-ed teams.
The are six division designations in AYSO: U19, U14, U12, U10, U8, and U6. The division designation U10 literally means that the player was "Under 10" on the July 31st proceeding the start of the season. If a child turns 8 on July 31st, then he/she would play in the U10 division. If a child turns 8 on August 1, then he/she would play in the U8 division because they are still under 8 on July 31st.
Safety on the field is the first responsibility of every coach, referee, and all other AYSO officials. Players may not wear any earrings, bracelets, watches, barrettes, or any object that could possibly cause injury to him/herself or another player to practice or to a soccer game. Pierced earrings are not allowed during practice or at games. Covering earrings with tape is not allowed. NO EXCEPTIONS. Please encourage your daughter to defer piercing her ears until after the season has concluded.
Metal and plastic hair clips are not allowed on the field for practice or during a game. Players with long hair may wish to wear soft hair ties such as "Scrunchies". The referee shall decide if an article of clothing is unsafe.
The referee shall decide when to stop play to take care of an injury. At the younger ages (U6 and U8) the referees are encouraged to stop play immediately. Older players may attempt to feign an injury as a tactical move, or may "bounce back" from a minor fall. As a courtesy, a team is encouraged to kick the ball out of play, as the referee can most easily deal with the injury at that time. If a serious injury occurs, the referee will stop play as soon as he / she is aware of the injury.
A player that is bleeding shall not participate in the match until the bleeding has stopped, and any blood on his / her clothing is covered or removed. (New parents: this seldom occurs.)
While the doctor may be representing your son's interest appropriately, the risk to other players mandates that he limit his participation to that of moral support on the sidelines. Players may not wear casts or splints which could possibly cause injury to him/herself or another player. The policy from the National AYSO allows for NO EXCEPTIONS. This applies at the games as well as at practices.
Glasses, hearing aids, and med-alerts should be worn to practices and games. The use of a eyeglass holder or sports-glasses is recommended.
"Soccer Cleats" are just soccer shoes. Soccer cleats are different from many other field sport shoes in that they fit snugly to facilitate kicking the ball and do not possess a "toe-cleat" at the tip of the shoe. Players do not have to have cleats at all -- athletic shoes are fine, especially for younger players. If you buy cleats for your child, be sure to purchase soccer cleats. If you already have cleats designed another sport, you may be able to cut off the toe cleat to permit the shoe's use on the soccer field for practice or games.
Referees, Coaches, Volunteering:
Board members gets the lowest pay, $0. Coaches and referees are more important so they get paid double, $00. We are an all volunteer organization. We do not receive any money for being a board member, a coach, or a referee. Working with children and seeing them develop is our reward.
If a serious problem should arise concerning the coach, the parents should:
Discuss the problem with your child and the coach and try to resolve the problem between yourselves. It is impossible to move teams around after they're assembled.
The referee administrators are your point of contact regarding referee issues, and are available to discuss any of your concerns. The administrators are listed on the Contact Us page. Please remember that the referees, like all other officials in AYSO, are volunteers who have dedicated a large amount of time and energy in training and refereeing every week.
Soccer referees in every league come to the game with differing degrees of training and experience. The badges represent the level of training the referee has accomplished. Ask a referee what his badge represents to him!
As upsetting as it may be, the best course is to try to forget about the mistake and get back into the game. The referees are human, so they will make mistakes just like everyone else. Put yourself in their shoes and think how you would like people to respond if you made a mistake. Also, please keep in mind that the referee is on the field and is seeing the game from a completely different location than you, and that his interpretation and application of the laws may differ from yours.
Remember that, above all, the coaches, referees, and all other AYSO staff are volunteers.
Specific comments should be sent from the Kids Zone Feedback form. Referees are always in demand - contact the Regional Referee Administrator and find out when the next referee class is. Then, come to class and become a certified referee. We need people that know the game and can make the calls as they see them. The administrators are listed on the Contact Us page.
What you cannot do is harass the referee - no matter how poorly you think he is performing. Volunteers willing to referee games are difficult to come by.
You sure can. AYSO will provide you with all the training for free. The only thing we as for are your time and commitment. Contact the Regional Coach Administrator or the Regional Referee Administrator to learn more. If coaching or refereeing is not for you, there are others way you can help. Talk to the Commissioner or a board member and ask how you can take part in bringing this quality soccer program to our community. You'll be glad you did. The administrators are listed on the Contact Us page.
The soccer game:
Just because it is wet outside, don't assume that the games will be canceled. Kids are waterproof and have been known to play soccer in the rain. On rainy days, the fields will be checked for playability.
Notices are placed on the AYSO San Mateo home page when fields are closed due to weather. Weather conditions often change during the day, Board Members and the Referee scheduled may call off the game as conditions worsen. If there is nothing on the web site and you don't hear from your Coach or Team Parent, assume the game is on and go to the field at game time.
The ball is out of play when the entirety of the ball crosses the goal line. (Goals are scored if the ball enters the goal.)
If the ball was last touched by a member of the attacking team, a "goal kick" is taken from anywhere within the "goal area":
Specific comments may be sent from the Kids Zone Feedback form.
The Laws Of The Game (there are no "rules" in soccer) are the same for professional soccer as in youth leagues. These Laws can be viewed online at FIFA Laws of the Game. Youth soccer players are not as skilled or experienced as professional players.
Referees in youth leagues understand that AYSO is a recreational league with younger and less skilled players than found in many adult leagues. Consequently, there are different thresholds for awarding of fouls for "playing in a dangerous manner" and "gaining an unfair advantage".
AYSO has made a small number of modifications to the laws (as permitted by the laws) to meet the needs of a youth sports program. The modifications are in the areas of field size and ball size for younger players, play time and substitutions. In San Mateo AYSO, the younger divisions play a special short-sided game with very simplified laws.
Yes. High School soccer games are governed by a set of rules which are different from the FIFA Laws of the Game.
©2013 AYSO San Mateo, California
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